Deeperbeige is dead. Long live Deeperbeige

March 22, 2007

Deeperbeige is dead. Its HDD head crashed into the disk, terminally. The rest of the PC was so old and clunky that it was time to replace the lot, rather than buy another old fashioned disk for it. After a week of strenuous research I've selected new components, ordered them in, built them up and configured Windows. Sadly you can't buy proper beige cases anymore, so I have a shiny black affair instead. Behold! Deepestblack:

Deepestblack consists of the following, briefly:

  • AMD 64 x2 4200+
  • ATI 1950 Pro 512Mb
  • 1Gb 800MHz RAM
  • 36Gb WD Raptor 10000rpm
  • 500Gb WD Caviar 7200rpm
  • 22" widescreen LCD
  • Many many silent fans and heatpipes
  • One irritatingly noisy fan on the gfx card
  • 5cc human blood

The case is the modern kind with the neat internal edges. I didn't cut myself on that, but on the heatsink that is something approximating a tall stack of forty or so giant razor blades held together on scaffolding. Like a kind of insane Gillette Fusion this thing doesn't just cut you, it cuts you many times at once in neat parallel lines. Of well, the fans will spray most of the blood into the room sooner or later.

There have been a couple of minor troubles along the way. As a solid reminder of how modern PCs for all their sophistication are really just multiple hacks over an ancient 16bit system architecture, XP absolutely definitely one-hundred-percent required me to have the drivers for my modern hard drives on a floppy disk before it could install. Whoever decided that drive A: was the only suitable source for drivers supplied to you on a CD should probably be fired... Out of a cannon.

Likewise, the person who thought that 28 bits was enough for addressing hard disks should also be fired. Out of a cannon... Into a brick wall. How could you come to the conclusion as a hardware expert that 137Gb would be more than anyone could ever want?

It's all worth it though. Deepestblack is faster, quieter, larger, greener, blacker, prettier, heatpipeier and workinger than Deeperbeige. It even has a pair of hidiously bright blue LEDs on the front that do odd things to my camera.

Long live Deepestblack!


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  1. Tenacious P says:
    March 22, 2007 @ 17:27 — Reply

    WinXP is dead! Long live Win... er, Ubuntu?

  2. Ciz says:
    March 22, 2007 @ 18:34 — Reply

    Whooaaa - dat badass rig is sick, man - technosexual fantasty. (Good case choise, Antec Sonata?)

  3. Ciz says:
    March 22, 2007 @ 18:36 — Reply

    P.S. Sucky XP? 64-bit Vista! Do it for Aero, if nothing else.

  4. CMU says:
    March 22, 2007 @ 19:11 — Reply

    Yep, it's an Antec Sonata (Piano). Silly name, decent case. Silly internal ducting doesn't fit over my slice-o-matic heatsink, but it doesn't need it.

    As for the OS, 64bit doesn't seem to offer any benifits over 32bit yet. Yeah, Aero looks whizzy, but the DRM quality downgrade stuff makes Vista too scary a prospect to try out.

  5. Ciz says:
    March 22, 2007 @ 19:47 — Reply

    Won't all hi-def players suffer from the same problem as Vista? Will XP be able to play content without downgrade? Same case I used, came with a nice quiet PSU. 64-bit OS is useful if you need to address over 4Gb RAM. I don't know why they naturally increased the number of bits, why not just increase the base dimension of storage instead? Build a nice 32-trit OS instead. Might require some minor hardware changes. And maybe slight tweaking of quantum physics to increase the number of observable states an electron can have.

  6. Rockvole says:
    March 23, 2007 @ 12:31 — Reply

    Woah there is room in there for a tech support guy. You could fit 6 shuttle PCs in the same space. Avoid Vista at all costs, it may end up as an unfortunate OS to skip - much like windows ME. Vista seems like an exercise by M$ to go cross-platform with the Xbox (to help prop up the declining PC games market, and help out the lagging vista sales). Mind you thats much like Sony using the PS3 to sell more movies.

  7. stephenw32768 says:
    March 23, 2007 @ 15:28 — Reply

    Nice specs (does WinXP run in 64-bit mode?), nice case, nice tech, really nice abstract blue LED art. But what will you do with all that horsepower?

  8. CMU says:
    March 23, 2007 @ 16:22 — Reply

    > But what will you do with all that horsepower?

    Read email, browse the web, the usual. Intel adverts tell me I need a supercomputer to cope with such demanding tasks.

    > does WinXP run in 64-bit mode?

    Not this version. You can get a 64bit version, but all the tests people have done so far suggest there's no performance advantage to it yet. The rest of the world's software hasn't caught up.

  9. Gavin says:
    March 26, 2007 @ 05:40 — Reply

    XP64 is a fair chunk faster (almost 2x as fast! Imagine that) for apps that actually need wide data words, like raytracing. Otherwise, no real advantage, and the pain of not being able to find drivers for any of your hardware.

    You should have water-cooled it :-)

  10. Ciz says:
    March 23, 2007 @ 22:24 — Reply

    Damn, I forgot it was cool to dislike M$. (Did you see what I did by transposing the 'S' with a dollar sign to express my distaste over Microsoft's capitalist business strategies?)

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